clock

1 of 3

noun (1)

plural clocks
often attributive
1
: a device other than a watch for indicating or measuring time commonly by means of hands moving on a dial
broadly : any periodic system by which time is measured
2
: a registering device usually with a dial
specifically : odometer
3
4
: a synchronizing device (as in a computer) that produces pulses at regular intervals
5

see also a race against the clock

clock

2 of 3

verb

clocked; clocking; clocks

transitive verb

1
a
: to time with a stopwatch or by an electric timing device
b
: to be timed at
2
: to register on a mechanical recording device
wind velocities were clocked at 80 miles per hour
3
: to hit hard
4
chiefly British : attain, realize
usually used with up
just clocked up a million … paperback salesPunch
5
a
: to travel (a distance) over time
clocks more than 15,000 miles a year on business
b
: put in sense 3
clocking long hours at the office

intransitive verb

1
: to have a specified duration or speed
used with in
the movie clocked in at just under 3 hours
broadly : to have a specified measure or value
used with in
the meal clocked in at about $15
2
: to register on a time sheet or time clock : punch
used with in, out, on, off
he clocked in late
clocker noun

clock

3 of 3

noun (2)

: an ornamental figure on the ankle or side of a stocking or sock
Phrases
against the clock
1
: with or within a time constraint
working against the clock
2
: with clocked speed rather than the order of finish as the criterion for placement
trial races against the clock
around the clock or less commonly round the clock
1
: continuously for 24 hours : day and night without cessation
2
: without relaxation and heedless of time
kill the clock or run out the clock
: to use up as much as possible of the playing time remaining in a game (such as football) while retaining possession of the ball or puck especially to protect a lead

Examples of clock in a Sentence

Noun (1) the clock reads 5:00 p.m. Verb He clocked 3 hours and 15 minutes in his last marathon. His fastest pitch was clocked at 91 miles per hour. The cop said she clocked me going 95 miles per hour. I was so angry I wanted to clock him.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Even though everyone has clocks on their phones these days, Daly said the analog face could take people back to a foregone era. Nick Rosenberger, Idaho Statesman, 13 June 2024 Watching the wheels turn in Cressida’s head at the end of 305 was so much fun, juxtaposed with Penelope’s spiraling anxiety and those melodramatic clock shots. Erin Strecker, IndieWire, 13 June 2024
Verb
Aimée clocked almost 100 credits during her decades-long career. Zac Ntim, Deadline, 18 June 2024 There are nine apartment-style residences (clock the washer-and-dryer set in every unit) designed to optimize your stay. Chadner Navarro, Vogue, 15 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for clock 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'clock.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun (1)

Middle English clok, from Middle Dutch clocke bell, clock, from Old French or Medieval Latin; Old French dialect (Picard) cloque bell, from Medieval Latin clocca, of Celtic origin; akin to Middle Irish clocc bell

Noun (2)

perhaps from clock entry 1

First Known Use

Noun (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1883, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun (2)

1530, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of clock was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near clock

Cite this Entry

“Clock.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/clock. Accessed 24 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition

clock

1 of 2 noun
1
: a device for measuring or telling the time and especially one not meant to be worn or carried about by a person
2
: a registering device with a dial that is attached to a machine to measure or record what it is doing
3
: a device (as in a computer) that sends out signals at regular spaces of time so that other events can happen in the correct order

clock

2 of 2 verb
1
: to time (as a person or a piece of work) by a timing device
2
: to show (as time or speed) on a recording device
winds clocked at 80 mph
3
: to hit hard
Etymology

Noun

Middle English clok "clock," from early Dutch clocke "bell, clock," from early French cloque "bell" or Latin clocca "bell"; of Celtic origin — related to cloak

Medical Definition

More from Merriam-Webster on clock

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